Woori Farm School – a great place to learn

2016 has seen the beginning of a partnership between Woori Yallock Farm School, Cire Training and OPTIONS to support the delivery of Certificate I Conservation and Land Management at the Farm School, located in Woori Yallock.

Woori Yallock Farm School has been offering programs for nearly thirty years to students facing academic and/or social challenges.  OPTIONS is the umbrella name for the services and educational support managed by Croydon Community School.

The delivery of the Certificate I Conservation and Land Management through the Farm School Program helps students to reengage, build social and team-working skills and increase self-esteem, whilst also providing the students with real pathways to employment. As part of the certificate program, students attend the Farm School one day a week for approximately 15 weeks.

“I have really enjoyed building strong relationships with friends in the course. This has given me more confidence and has helped me in mainstream schooling.  I have now decided that I want to be in media when I am older as I have been able to take videos and create short films covering what we have been doing.”  Ben, Healesville High School student

Some of the projects undertaken this year as part of the Certificate I have included restumping and painting the original Art Room (built in 1876); potting native plants, cuttings and seedlings in the Farm School nursery; learning how to prune plants; splitting firewood; building a pier and fishing shelter at the lake (which used to be the school’s footy oval); and assisting the Shire Yarra Ranges in planting trees and shrubs in a revegetation zone in Woori Yallock.

“I enjoyed building and really liked putting new stumps under the art building.  This course has helped me decide that I would like to be a bricky when I am older.” Riley, Healesville High School student

“I loved working around the property fixing things.”  Josh, Healesville High School student

Students from Healesville High School are one group who have undertaken this course in 2016, with 39 out of 40 enrolments successfully completing their Certificate I Conservation and Land Management.

“I have enjoyed learning about the Aboriginal culture so much that I now want to be an Aboriginal Liaison Officer when I am older.   I have relatives that live in Tamworth that want to now come and visit the Woori Farm School in 2017 due to me being so excited when sharing what I learnt when I speak to them on the phone.” Brandi, Healesville High School student

The school, which was established in 1873, was originally created as a ‘tent school’ by the early settlers of the area. Three years later they built an art room.  At one stage the government tried to sell the school but found it was owned by local residents and therefore unable to be sold.

Cire Training is very proud to share that Woori Yallock Farm School, partner to Cire Training, has recently been awarded an Environmental Schools Award by the UNAA World Environment Day Awards for 2016.

The UNAA (United Nations Association of Australia) Awards, which have been running since 2000, celebrate the innovation and creativity of Australian organisations and individuals in taking positive action.

The Woori Yallock Farm School was also a finalist for the ResourceSmart School Awards in the Biodiversity Secondary School of the Year category this year.

For further information on the Woori Farm School email Peter Preuss or call 0431 756 072. If you would like to know more about VET qualifications that Cire Training delivers click here or call 1300 835 235.




A career that won’t feel like work

Find the right career and it won’t feel like work at all

Mark Twain once said “The secret of success is making your vocation your vacation.”  Ben Di Battista has achieved this.

Ben is 21 years old, he lives in Wandin and is so grateful for having managed to complete his Horticulture apprenticeship at the National Rhododendron Gardens in Olinda.  Upon completing it, his dream had come true, where his passion for horticulture had become his job.  The variety from one day to the next is what kept him energised and excited.

Today he continues to be involved in guiding and teaching work experience students and enjoys it so much that he is now studying with Cire in order to obtain his Certificate IV in Small Business Management in the hope that one day he will own his own nursery.

Cire Training encourages people just like Ben to turn their passion into a job.  Horticulture is an appropriate skill set to have in today’s economy.  It would create stability for future employment as food sustainability is growing in importance on a global scale.  Knowing how to manage a garden to not only be sustainable but to also produce food is a highly valued skill.

As stated by P. Wise’s research in 2014 titled Grow Your Own– The potential value and impacts of residential and community food gardening, Australia’s high rate of urbanisation means that most people experience a significant disconnect between their food production and consumption. Over several decades, suburban gardens have ceased to be major sites of food production and Australians reportedly have a declining understanding and appreciation of how their food is grown. Recent years have seen a renewed interest in the quality, provenance, freshness and price of food, driving a companion interest in Australians growing their own food at home or in community gardens.

Cire Training offers industry qualifications across Horticulture, Animal Studies, Early Childhood Education and Care, for further details on courses starting in semester 2 click here.